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So far Allie Preston has created 198 blog entries.

An easy action you can take in honor of Earth Week

It’s #EarthWeek! In honor of the 52nd annual Earth Day this Friday, we’ve got an easy action you can take to protect Florida’s water. If you follow our work closely, perhaps you’ve already asked Gov. Ron DeSantis to Veto SB 2508 — a dangerous bill that has sweeping implications for Floridians and our environment because it preserves the status quo. But we’ve only got a small window of time to stop this bad bill from becoming law, so even if you’ve already sent a message, we still need your help to spread the word. If you haven’t already, please send a letter to Gov. DeSantis right now asking him to VETO SB 2508. If you’ve already done so, please commit [...]

2022-04-19T12:58:50-04:00April 19th, 2022|Action Alerts, All Posts, SB 2508|

Martin County Commissioners should oppose “Rural Lifestyle” Amendment

Friends of the Everglades executive director Eve Samples delivered the following comments opposing the "Rural Lifestyle" Amendment to Martin County’s comprehensive plan at the Martin County Board of County Commissioners meeting on April 19, 2022. I’m Eve Samples, executive director of Friends of the Everglades, which was founded in 1969 by Marjory Stoneman Douglas, and is now headquartered in Stuart.  Our organization, which is dedicated to protecting the Everglades and its connected waterways — including the St. Lucie River — stands with our allies at 1000 Friends of Florida in opposing the proposed “Rural Lifestyles” amendment to Martin County’s comprehensive plan.  We thank Commissioners Sarah Heard and Stacey Hetherington for voting against this concerning amendment during its first public hearing [...]

SB 2508 preserves the status quo. DeSantis can still #KilltheBill

Take a look at the image above. It’s emblematic of the status quo that has allowed Lake Okeechobee’s water to be mismanaged in a way that benefits special interests — especially giant sugarcane corporations — while triggering toxic-algae blooms and depriving the Everglades of water. Senate Bill 2508 preserves that status quo.  If Gov. Ron DeSantis wants to follow through on his promise to address Florida’s water crisis, he must veto it.  Specifically, SB 2508 threatens to: Constrain environmental improvements that could be achieved through the new Lake Okeechobee System Operating Manual (LOSOM).  Undermine years of work to correct a failing water-management system by perpetuating the harmful “hold and dump” practices of the existing Lake Okeechobee Regulation Schedule (LORS 08). [...]

Friends of the Everglades joins amicus brief opposing tollroad extension through the Everglades

On April 7, 2022, Friends of the Everglades joined an amicus brief in support of an appeal by Tropical Audubon Society to overturn the Florida Cabinet's approval of Miami-Dade County's proposed SR-836 extension. If built, the tollway extension would breach the county’s Urban Development Boundary (UDB) and intrude into a 13-mile stretch of Everglades Wetlands, formally known as the Bird Drive Basin. In 2020, we celebrated an administrative judge’s ruling against the proposed extension highway, which cited threats to wetlands and Everglades restoration and exposed the claimed transportation benefits of the tollway as being unsupported by the evidence. The ruling was a win for Miami-Dade County residents, Everglades restoration, Florida's drinking water supply, and crucial habitat for birds and other wildlife. [...]

Everglades Illustrated: The Scientific Uncertainty of ASR

Photo Credit: South Florida Water Management District The Scientific Uncertainty of ASR Each of the red outlines in the map above indicates a proposed cluster of aquifer storage and recovery (ASR) wells. Pitched as an answer to water-storage needs north of Lake Okeechobee, the wells’ feasible use within Everglades restoration and exorbitant cost have been at the center of heated debate in Florida’s environmental community. Proponents claim the technology offers a way to store large volumes of water deep in the aquifer — water that would otherwise pour untreated into Lake Okeechobee. But scientific concerns abound. Some experts say they’re inefficient and won’t have enough capacity to relieve toxic discharges, and they warn that metals dissolved in the [...]

On Marjory Stoneman Douglas’ birthday, your support empowers our resilience

Today is Marjory Stoneman Douglas’ birthday, and we find ourselves contemplating the pursuits she championed as we try to see the challenges of today through our founder’s eyes. No doubt there’s been progress, but amid the salient victories, Florida’s wild spaces remain under grave attack. The Florida’s Legislature too often works to undercut environmental protections. Glades community residents deserve real protection from the environmental injustice of sugarcane burning. We still face an uphill battle against greed, corruption and bad politics more than two decades after Marjory’s death. If Marjory were around today, we think she’d be furious. We are also absolutely certain that despite this, she wouldn’t give up. In fact, it was part of her legacy to draw from [...]

2022-04-06T11:02:22-04:00April 7th, 2022|All Posts, Marjory Stoneman Douglas|

Interview with Everglades Activist Maggy Hurchalla

Maggy Hurchalla was an Everglades activist who worked with Friends of the Everglades for many years, even working directly with our founder Marjory Stoneman Douglas. She was a wealth of freely-shared information and a fierce advocate of Florida's environment. She was a spirited adventurer and an accomplished kayaker that could put paddlers half her age to shame. And she was one of the greatest storytellers we've ever had the pleasure of knowing. Maggy passed away on February 19, 2022, leaving a tremendous hole in the heart of Florida's environmental community who looked to her as a leader of conservation advocacy until her final days. She is greatly missed by many, and we carry on the work to protect Florida's wild [...]

2022-04-07T12:22:07-04:00April 6th, 2022|All Posts, Everglades Restoration|

ASR wells are still the subject of vast scientific uncertainty

Photo credit: South Florida Water Management District Aquifer Storage and Recovery (ASR) refers to the process of recharge, storage, and recovery of water in an aquifer. ASR is the central component of the Lake Okeechobee Watershed Restoration Project (LOWRP) as presented in the draft PIR, accounting for roughly 85% of the costs. ASR has long been the subject of considerable scientific uncertainty. Questions surrounding its feasible use in Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP) projects date back to an evaluation by the National Academy of Sciences in 2001 which identified five areas of major uncertainty that needed to be addressed before it was clear that ASR would be viable on a regional scale in CERP: 1) operations to protect [...]

2022-04-07T12:21:45-04:00April 5th, 2022|All Posts, Everglades Restoration, U.S. Congress|

Your moment of Everglades zen: A rare encounter

                        Spotted in the Everglades: A critically endangered smalltooth sawfish A friend of the Everglades recently took a boat trip from Flamingo to the Shark River basin where he shared a chance encounter with an extremely special Everglades species. In the video below, you'll see the protruding double dorsal fins and tail of a smalltooth sawfish as it patrols the shallow shoreline of Shark River. The species gets it name from its most distinct feature, detailed in the drawing above — a long, flat snout lined with teeth that looks like a saw and is known as a rostrum. These saws are extremely sensitive to currents given off by [...]

2022-04-12T09:50:59-04:00April 5th, 2022|All Posts, Everglades Zen, Wildlife Habitat|

Veto request caps 2022 Legislative Session

The Florida Legislature has ended its 2022 session. But we’re not done yet. One of the worst bills to emerge from Tallahassee this year was approved by the Legislature but has not yet been signed into law by Gov. DeSantis. Senate Bill 2508 was a toxic stew of bad ideas that sought to undermine responsible water management on Lake Okeechobee, fast-track wetlands destruction and expand the Rural and Family Lands Protection Program to rival, and perhaps compete with, Florida’s signature environmental land-acquisition program, Florida Forever. Introduced surreptitiously as a “budget conforming bill,” SB 2508 had only one legislative hearing — but generated such a massive wave of opposition that legislators amended it, then further altered it during budget negotiations, stripping [...]

2022-04-13T16:10:06-04:00March 31st, 2022|All Posts, Florida Legislature, SB 2508|

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